Thursday, October 16, 2008

I Want To Be A Real [Boy] Scholar, But I Can’t Stop Lying!

Some Christians Need To Learn Basic Honesty In Debates

The latest comment from Joel at the Puritan-Reformed fellow’s blog reeks of lies and deceit. That is one reason why I could not be bothered to engage him. If he could not brush-up his honesty and integrity when confronting his opponents, I doubt he would be prepared for any serious research.

He wrote:

Antithesis was not arguing from a Van Tillian view but from a Neo-orthodox position. Secondly, the language used is not consistent with Christian behaviour. Third, he is not very familiar with some of the modern Van Tillian writers when he said that modern apologists in the Van Tillian school do not use the argument from "impossibility of the contrary". (TAG argument)

I take issue with his second and third point.

He made the bare assertion that my language is not consistent with Christian behavior. What slander. Readers can read all that transpired between the both of us. It appears that anybody who is not a Clarkian would be labeled as either a heretic by Daniel Chew, or be slandered by his bulldog – Joel – as being unchristian.

He also asserted that, “[I am] not very familiar with some of the modern Van Tillian writers when he said that modern apologists in the Van Tillian school do not use the argument from "impossibility of the contrary". (TAG argument)”

Again, this young man is simply ignorant. I had already answered him in this post.

I wrote,

“The conceptualist’s argument for the existence of God (as described by atheist Quentin Smith) has much potential in the realm of dealing with atheologians; unfortunately, the tag (pun intended) of “transcendental argument for God” has been following this valid argument. By the way, Gordon Clark used the ontology of truth to develop an interesting “transcendental argument” in “A Christian View of Men and Things.” The late Ron Nash, a Christian philosopher heavily influenced by Clark, defends it in his lectures on Christian apologetics. Again, I’m certain you would have known this.”

[Joel] wrote, “I’m referring to Van Til’s argument which "argues from the impossibility of the contrary”. This is a basic mistake in Logic, as the video link in my earlier comments indicate. We should be arguing from the impossibility of the contradictory – not contrary.”

I further replied, "Er … the conceptualist’s argument is similar to the TAG you are reiterating here. Try googling for “conceptualist’s argument Quentin Smith?” But I’m sure you would have done this."

He obviously didn't do this.

My point is, both Van Til and Clark used the TAG. By the way, if you would research into this a little more, the TAG is logically valid (which points us back to my previous question – what qualifies as a “proof” for you?). There’s more to Aristotelian logic than this; Google is a useful tool.

I finally added:

Oh yes, before I forget – no contemporary philosopher who uses the TAG or the conceptualist argument "argues from the impossibility of the contrary”. Copi’s text (shown in that “enlightening” Youtube video) is for first year students; the folks I know don’t make that mistake. And surely if you would pick up a paper on this, you would find more than the square of opposition.

See my exact wording? I was referring to contemporary philosophers, not “modern apologists in the Van Tillian school.” Apparently Joel couldn’t conjure up sufficient honesty when he is out of rational arguments against me. And it is clear that he has no clue which philosopher(s) I’m referring to. (I hope he worked out what the "square of opposition" is.)

What is so amazingly ignorant of this chap is this: in philosophical journals, philosophers of religion use the conceptualist argument, which is a development of the TAG. The conceptualist argument does NOT argue from "impossibility of the contrary." And that is what I was pointing out to him in good spirit (read my original comment).

What's more, his idol – Gordon Clark – uses the TAG as well! So what is his problem? Why doesn’t he criticize Clark's TAG? Anyone smell the stench of hypocrisy here?

Lastly, my “neo-orthodox” label was given to me by the Puritan-Reformed fellow. So why can’t I use that label?

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